Thursday, February 3, 2011

Review: Casting the Runes by M.R. James

More Ghost Stories:
by M. R. James
Edward Arnold & Co. (1911)

Warning: before to write a book’s review, read Casting the Runes (You could change idea!).

The runic alphabet, developed from the Etruscan, was used in northern Europe from third to seventeenth century.
In magical practice ‘casting the runes’ means send curses through slip of paper in runic letters.

Karswell is a writer of alchemy and witchcraft books. When somebody refuses to review or submits a negative one about his books, the reviewer’s fate is marked.

‘The obvious course was to find a match, and also to consult his watch: he might as well know how many hours of discomfort awaited him.
So he puts his hand into the well-known nook under the pillow: only, it did not get so far.
What he touched was, according to his account, a mouth, with teeth, and with hair about it, and, he declares, not the mouth of a human being.’ (page 112)

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